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MP3 and More 23/07/2019

Original Music Festival To Return With New Interactive Music-Making Events

Original Music Festival To Return With New Interactive Music-Making Events

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New York, NY (Top40 Charts) Mile of Music, presented by Fox Communities Credit Union, will return in August with some new interactive events from the festival's popular Music Education Team (MET). Highlights include a Native American music showcase, Balinese Angklung playing workshop and a Dances of India workshop.

An interactive drumming event from the Music Education Team at Mile of Music (photo by Brian Pertl)

The environment at Mile of Music is so welcoming, and it encourages our community to feel comfortable being explorers, and even beginners, in their musical journey.

When Mile of Music, presented by Fox Communities Credit Union, returns next week, it will feature another strong slate of educational workshops for all ages.

The Music Education Team (MET) has announced that it will feature 50 interactive, inclusive music-making events along with several spontaneous participation pop-ups when the festival comes to Downtown Appleton, Wisconsin, from August 1-4 with its line-up of 220 original artists and 950 live performances.

A foundation of Mile of Music since it first started in 2013, the MET has brought focus to music education in the community as it highlights music traditions and experiences from different cultures around the world through hands-on experiences. New to the schedule for Mile 7 are:

Native American music showcase -- Wade Fernandez, an award-winning and international touring artist will share traditional flute playing from the Menominee Nation

Balinese Angklung playing workshop - this bamboo-based/pitched percussion will be taught by Indah Erdmann, a children's book author and former teacher originally from Indonesia

Dances of India workshop - Bharatnatyam and Kathak dance techniques will be on display with participation from attendees

As with past festivals, the MET will host numerous workshops and jam sessions throughout the four-day weekend where visitors can join in the fun with themes related to hip-hop, jazz, funk and much more. Some of the styles sampled will be Brazilian Samba drumming, Afro-Cuban drumming and singing, Ghanaian Ewe drumming and dancing, Mariachi and Didjeridu. There will also be sessions for ukulele, guitar, pBone and pTrumpet with the pBones and pTrumpets generously donated by Warwick Music Group.

"It's a beautiful thing to see people of so many backgrounds making and enjoying music together in the same space," said Leila Ramagopal Pertl, music education curator for Mile of Music. "More importantly, we are learning from one another in an inclusive and respectful atmosphere."

Although the MET events are designed to be enjoyed by participants of all ages, there are also a number of events specifically designed for young children, including "Stories that Sing," a lively session that brings picture books to life through song and dance.

The MET is a diverse team of music educators from Lawrence University and the greater Fox Cities, led by Ramagopal Pertl. Veteran teachers, teaching artists, current Lawrence students and aspiring high school music educators are all represented on the team.

"The environment at Mile of Music is so welcoming, and it encourages our community to feel comfortable being explorers, and even beginners, in their musical journey," Ramagopal Pertl explained. "Many attendees come with a plan to see performing artists, but end up leaving as active music contributors themselves, because as they actively sing, play or dance, their mindset about the role music plays in their lives changes."

MET sponsors for 2019 include the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group, Lawrence University and Mile of Music with additional support from Heid Music.

Mile of Music is an original roots music festival that launched in August 2013 as a creative and economic catalyst in Downtown Appleton, Wis. The four-day festival, produced by Willems Marketing & Events, is held in August with the support of more than 60 community sponsors and 400 volunteers. It features 950 live music sets and 220 artists at 60 venues along the one-mile, walkable stretch of College Avenue and the nearby riverfront.

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